Branching out and meeting new people has been a huge part of this trip for me. But today, we got the gang of ILCers back together again to venture together into the bizarre and marvelous world that is Downtown Chicago. Our day started out a little late, since some of us wanted to take care of things and get work out of the way in the morning, with us leaving campus just after noon. The group was the UChicago cohort plus one new friend, a very talented American Law and Litigation student named Doris. The day was warm and sunny with almost a California-like perfection. With this set up, obviously great things were in store.
|The magic bean!|
|Reflecting on the surface|
After some tricky figuring with public transport (the red line was likely undergoing maintenance of some sort, so we took the 6 bus instead) we ended up Downtown near Millennium Park. I finally got to see the bean up close and personal as opposed to from a far distance due to the high likelihood of death by lightening. Even though I had seen plenty of pictures of the bean before, seeing it in person was a whole different experience. It's surface is so curved and reflective that everything looks strangely warped and intriguingly beautiful. We took some great pictures with the bean and explored the park a little bit before deciding to hunt down some lunch. I loved walking down the street and hearing all the street musicians perform. There were also some incredibly talented spray paint artists that we stopped and watched for a while.
After a quick lunch at Shake Shack, we decided to go shopping along the Magnificent Mile (Mag Mile), a long stretch of high end stores on Michigan Ave. We went in to tons of different places looking for souvenirs, and had a great time just chatting and roaming around. We visited places ranging from general souvenir stores to hat stores to candy stores and more. For me, while the shopping was fun and a good way to spend time together, I was mostly focused on our next destination: THE BEACH! Oak Street Beach is a gorgeous beach that is accessible seemingly right at the end of the city. It was so bizarre to me to see the skyscrapers make way to warm golden sands and waves so immediately, and it was a relief to put our sore and worn out feet in the cold waves. What better way to spend a warm summer day?
|People enjoying the waves at the edge of the city|
After the beach it was time to eat again ... this time at a lovely Thai restaurant called Silver Spoon. The food was so delicious that I ate entirely too much! Luckily, we didn't have to walk far to get to the red line. We got back home with just enough time to put our things down and still be a little early for curfew. I got my tickets for Jazzin' at the Shedd, an event happening next week at the Shedd aquarium, from my RA; stay tuned until next Wednesday to hear how exciting that will be! I was tempted to go to bed after signing in for curfew, but ended up in one of the lounges where a lot of people were talking and trying to watch a movie. Instead of participating in the movie, however, I was talked into learning chess by Jeremy. While I have harbored some resentment and dislike of chess, I was really impressed by how accessible and social he made it and actually had a really good time playing. A fantastic way to end a fantastic day.